January 26, 2021 – After winning the biggest board game award in the land with Pictures, Christian Stöhr, the Spiel Des Jahres 2020 winner follows up with Juicy Fruit. No, it is not about the gum, it is an opportunity to collect fruits and put them to clever use to end up with the most attractive island. Alongside Stöhr, the game’s colorful art has been created by Annika Heller.
The game is coming from Deep Print Games, a relatively new publishing company out of Germany. In January of 2020, it was announced that Peter Eggert and Philipp El Alaoui (former eggertspiele/Plan B Games), Viktor Kobilke (Frosted Games, former eggertspiele/Plan B Games), Matthias Nagy (Frosted Games) as well as Karsten Esser and Andreas Finkernagel (Pegasus Spiele) would form the company, a publisher for board games based in Berlin.
The update came from BGG on Twitter:
Pictures is a party game that calls on different aspects of your creativity to try and communicate with the other players in ways you would have never imagined. Juicy Fruit appears to be very different, falling more along the line of a tile placement and grid movement economic strategy game. Check out the description from the publisher below:
Each player has their own small island paradise where they grow delicious fruit. To win, you must gain the most points by cleverly supplying ships and by adding the best businesses to your island.
Your turn in Juicy Fruits works like this: First, you slide one of your fruit collector tokens a number of unblocked spaces and collect that many fruits of the token’s type: banana, orange, lime, pomegranate, or mangosteen. Then you may either fulfill the order of a ship on your shores or claim a business from a shared display and place it onto your island (or do nothing). Clever planning and timing is vital because until you supply the ships on your shores, they block valuable island space which could be used to collect more fruit — but if you concentrate too much on the ships, the most promising businesses may get snatched by your opponents. Also, the sooner businesses are claimed, the quicker the game might end.
With each play, Juicy Fruits poses new puzzles of how to move your tokens efficiently and how to balance clearing your island with claiming businesses. The game also includes an additional “juice factory” mode and four modes of solo play.
The Spiel Des Jahres awards are considered widely as the top board game award and is like winning a best picture Oscar for your given year. It is a little interesting depending on where you live because it has to do with games released in a given year in Germany and games don’t neccesarily release in all countries in the same year. The awards coincide with the massive Essen Spiel, one of the biggest gaming conventions in the world. The first award winner was given out in 1979. In 2011, they started awarding the Kennerspiel des Jahres, which was geared to heavier strategy games so the original Speil could be reserved for more general audience games.